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Research Paper Reflection Essay About English 101

This is a reflection I wrote for ENG 101, i think it’s good, i hope it portrays the skills I’ve learned this semester…

Brandon Harter


Reflective Letter

December 1, 2007

This semester in Ĺupčo Spasovski’s English 101 class I’ve learned many critical aspects of writing that I had previously overlooked.There have been great improvements in nearly all forms of writing in my papers.I’ve made great strides in my grammar, punctuation, flow, and sentence structure.My writing now as a whole is presented much more clearly and with far less errors.These improvements began while starting the first assigned essay.

An autobiographical narrative was simply a big word for a story about oneself.This is where my writing first began to start improving.By having the first writing assignment be a story about myself, Ĺupčo opened the door for me to begin to write with confidence.Knowing I wasn’t a very talented writer, I was relieved to have to do nothing more than tell a story about something significant to me.Not only was the paper simply storytelling, but it was also something that I was passionate about.My paper titled Refugee was the story about when I first attended the youth group the Refuge and the impact on my life.Unlike other essays I had written in the past, I actually cared about this topic so I was able to write it with ease.I found myself writing to the current deadline, but not wanting to stop just because I had the option.I had a desire to keep writing, my passion had been sparked and I was eager to finish the story.This paper had given me the confidence that I needed to believe that I had the capability of writing a good essay.The in class writing assignments helped me to narrow down my topics until I decided for sure what I wanted to write on.The next paper built upon the first by allowing us to pick something that we were passionate about to write a research paper on.

Never having been a fan of research papers or MLA format I feared that I would struggle more on this essay than I had on the first.Yet picking the topic gave me a confidence that I hadn’t expected.Euthanasia, it is a heavily debated topic, however that is only because the details are not widely known.This paper gave me a mission, to unveil those details.I now had confidence and drive fueling my writing.I wanted to write an essay that would persuade the readers to believe how I did, but I learned that sometimes that is impossible, also that wasn’t my assignment.My assignment in writing a exploratory research paper was to write an opinionated yet fact supported essay, not to convince anyone, merely to provide the correct information.While doing peer editing I was further ensured that people may not always fully agree with the side the writer takes.After each draft of the essay a fellow classmate would read my essay and critique it.I found all of these critiques helpful because they often pointed out grammatical and punctuation errors while giving helpful and encouraging comments.From the peer editing of the first two drafts of my euthanasia exploratory essay I found that people have many different views and may agree in certain circumstances, yet differ in others.This essay taught me how to research more thoroughly and how to differentiate between problems and issues.

The third essay I wrote was an informative and surprising essay.This one needed some extra thought; it was more than something I was passionate about, it had to be a shocking fact.An in class activity helped me solidify my topic for this essay.I wanted to write about Disney, but I was unsure of what part of Disney to focus on.With a prospective topic the class got in a circle and passed their paper around.Each student would write what they thought about the topic on the paper.Most people in the class new about hidden messages in Disney movies, so I knew that was something I should include because people were very interested in it, but didn’t know which rumors were true and which were false.One comment that sparked my interest was when someone said that Disney is not as family friendly as they appear.I agreed with that statement and built my essay off of it.This essay taught me to research harder to find topics and to really get the truth before writing from uncertain opinions.This essay wasn’t very opinion based, it was used to teach me how to write on a researched topic.It taught me to go deeper in unveiling proof and misconceptions.

The final essay was an analytical group essay about advertisements.This essay focused on analyzing detail in advertisement.It taught me how to study an advertisement to understand why everything is the way it is.I needed to learn how to think critically know how different shots and colors appeal to different audiences.The reading assignments made the largest impact on this essay.Each reading assignment further explained different parts of advertisement.Many factors are considered before creating an advertisement.First a specific audience must be chosen, no one ad can appeal to everyone.From there the camera angle, color, design, model and many other aspects must be considered.One main thing I learned is that no piece of an advertisement is accidentally put it, every detail is considered and purposely done.Although with each passing essay I learned a new skill in writing, I feel that my best essay I wrote was my first one.

My autobiographical narrative was my first essay in English 101 and after writing it I continued to learn more things about improving my writing skills, yet I still feel that Refugee was my best essay.It was the first essay where I felt confident enough write a story, it wasn’t research or analysis, it was only my story.Although it was an actual event, it was a story I told and created.This wasn’t based off of someone else’s research or study; it came from me and me alone.I know my skills were still improving, but in comparison it carried more confidence and joy than any of my other essays.I wrote truthfully, not needing to convince anyone of anything.The reason this is my overall best writing piece of the year is because it is my favorite piece I have ever written, not just this year, but since I’ve been in school. It was one of the only assignments I’ve ever felt proud of when I finished, it gave me a sense of accomplishment instead of completion.This essay tells my story and that really meant something to me.I feel it was my best work of the semester.

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~ by bharter on December 4, 2007.

Posted in School

Below we offer two examples of thoughtful reflective essays that effectively and substantively capture the author's growth over time at California State University Channel Islands (CI). We suggest that you write your own essay before reading either of these models-then, having completed your first draft, read these over to consider areas in your own background that you have not yet addressed and which may be relevant to your growth as a reader, writer, or thinker.

Any reference to either of these essays must be correctly cited and attributed; failure to do so constitutes plagiarism and will result in a failing grade on the portfolio and possible other serious consequences as stated in the CSUCI Code of Conduct.

View the examples

View Sample Reflective Essay #1

View Sample Reflective Essay #2

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